China’s aviation industry sees staggering $5b losses in Q1

By Tu Lei Source:Global Times Published: 2020/4/15 15:33:40

Maintenance engineer Wu Zhenzhen checks an airplane at the Haikou Meilan International Airport in Haikou, South China's Hainan Province on March 6, 2020. Photo:Xinhua

 The Chinese aviation industry was pummeled by the novel coronavirus as economic losses neared 40 billion yuan ($5.67 billion) in the first quarter of the year.

The industry saw losses of 39.8 billion yuan in the first three months, including a staggering 33.6 billion yuan in losses for Chinese airlines, an official from air regulator the Civil Aviation Administra-tion of China (CAAC) said on Wednesday.

The industry in March continued to struggle in the mire following losses of 17.5 billion yuan in the first two months. 24.59 billion yuan was lost in February, including record 20.96 billion yuan losses for carriers, the regulator said last month.

The CAAC attributed the revenue plunge to the impact of the pandemic.

The International Air Transport Association on Tuesday said the COVID-19 crisis will see airline passenger revenues slashed by $314 billion in 2020, a 55 percent reduction from 2019.

It also said that full-year passenger demand, for both domestic and international airlines, is expected to drop 48 percent compared to 2019.

However, the Chinese aviation industry has witnessed a slow rebound in domestic air travel. 

China's passenger transport capacity was down 53.9 percent to 74.08 million in the first quarter, but its freight capacity volume for all-cargo flights was up 28.4 percent, said the CAAC.

From April 8 to Tuesday, Wuhan's airport saw 799 flights to 45 Chinese cities after it lifted its lockdown. Chinese carriers had by Tuesday transported 9,544 tons of medical supplies on 575 pas-senger and cargo flights to 64 countries, including the US, Iraq and Iran.

Posted in: AVIATION

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